Encouraging news from the RFL

Date published: 17 July 2020

These are tough times for professional sport across the globe, but the Rugby Football League (RFL) revealed two items of good news at this week's annual meeting.

It made a profit of £75,000 in 2019 following big losses in the previous two years.

The sport also enjoyed increased participation for the third year in a row with 109,501 people playing regularly, up from 102,304 the year before.

The profit was achieved despite falls in match and broadcast income (down by more than £1m) because there was no home Test series.

The RFL's Marc Lovering, commenting on participation figures, said: "We continue to make good progress against other contractual targets on which Sport England funding is based.

"We have grown in primary, junior, youth and open-age rugby for the first time this cycle.

"We have not only seen strong growth in schools, but also in the Women's and Girls' games."

* FAMOUS BBC presenter and commentator Clare Balding OBE has succeeded Tony Adams MBE as the RFL's new president for the next two years, while Carl Hall of Doncaster RLFC will extend his vice-presidency until December, 2020 when he will be succeeded by Mike Smith of Hull KR.

* TOM Coyd will be the England Wheelchair squad's new head coach in next year's triple-header World Cup with separate tournaments featuring men, women and wheelchair-bound players.

Coyd (24), whose family comes from Warrington, will be assisted by Wayne Boardman of Halifax and Martyn Rothwell of Sheffield Hallam University.

The appointment of Coyd was a proud moment for his father Martin Coyd OBE, general manager of England Wheelchair Rugby League and the driving force behind its development.

His younger son Joe is a member of the England squad.

Although Martin moved south several years ago to spearhead the rise of the Medway Dragons club in Kent, the Coyd family has long had close associations with the community game in Warrington.

Do you have a story for us? Want to tell us about something going on in and around Oldham? Let us know by emailing news@oldham-chronicle.co.uk , calling our Oldham-based newsroom on 0161 633 2121 , tweeting us @oldhamchronicle or messaging us through our Facebook page. All contact will be treated in confidence.